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A high-class call girl kills a customer in self-defense. To avoid scandal, her parents try to have her declared mentally incompetent. Not helping matters is that she is very distrustful of everybody, including her court-appointed attorney, and is very disruptive during her court hearings. Written by
Tony Berkoff <email@example.com>
In New York, the public defender Aaron Levinsky (Richard Dreyfuss) witnesses the high-class call girl Claudia Draper (Barbra Streisand) beating her attorney while waiting for his hearing in the courtroom. Judge Stanley Murdoch (James Whitmore) assigns him to defend Claudia and soon he learns that she killed her client Allen Green (Leslie Nielsen) in self-defense. However, her mother Rose Kirk (Maureen Stapleton) and her wealthy stepfather Arthur Kirk (Karl Malden) want her declared mentally incompetent to go on trial. Dr. Herbert A. Morrison (Eli Wallach) prepares a medical report stating that she is mentally unstable to support the trial, but Claudia wants to prove that she is sane; otherwise she would spend the rest of her life in a mental institution. Along the hearing, the District Attorney Francis MacMillan (Robert Webber) and Levinsky question the defendant, her mother, her stepfather and Dr. Morring and the painful truth about Claudia's childhood is disclosed.
"Nuts" is one of the best courtroom dramas ever made. The story is developed practically in one location, but the performances are awesome highlighting Barbra Streisand. This actress deserved at least a nomination to the Oscar. The conclusion has a corny moment, when Claudia hugs her mother. My vote is eight.
Title (Brazil): "Querem me Enlouquecer" ("They Want to Drive me Crazy")
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